One of the great joys of being a mastering engineer is when you come across a release so special, that you simply feel an innate privilege in the process, and unadulterated joy in helping something in the final stages of its fruition. In early 2016, this was very much the case when Eilean Records sent over an album for release by the young South African artist, Jason van Wyk.
Jason has been releasing electronic music since the tender age of just 14. Whilst he continues to be known for this work, his most recent output has seen him focus on his beautiful piano playing, intertwined this with his subtle sound design and wide open soundscapes.’Attachment’ was his first foray into an ambient / post-classical piano cross-over, and it was met with acclaim, selling out of its limited edition immediately.
Quite apart from being a breath of fresh air with its flowing and soulful piano elements, the sound design and lush melodious pads just had me absolutely hooked. After creating a very clean master of ‘Attachment’, I felt there was another layer to be told in the work, with its close recording techniques, dusty piano tones, and overall warmth. After inviting Jason to release his follow-up on Home Normal, we also agreed that a complete remaster using tapes would be a lovely way of approaching ‘Attachment’ again. Alongside his follow-up ‘Opacity’, with its searing vision, clarity and electronics twists; we are so happy to present another side to Jason’s wonderful work with this remaster.
The remastered and repackaged edition of ‘Attachment’ will be released on September the 15th, with Jason’s follow-up ’Opacity’ being released on September the 30th.
All music written & produced by Jason van Wyk
Recorded in Cape Town, South Africa during 2015-2016
Violin: Brittany Dilkes, Gavin Clayton
Cello: Lynne Donson
Piano and electronics: Jason van Wyk
Mastered by Ian Hawgood at Mokoshi
Cover photography by Vadim Petrakov
℗&© 2017 Jason van Wyk.
Under license to Home Normal.
All rights reserved.
'Those who appreciate the tender piano compositions and discrete application of electronics that characterize much of Nils Frahm‘s work will especially appreciate this recording. Attachment is replete with simple, unabashed beauty albeit with sophisticated underpinnings – bittersweet tunes rendered on dampened piano interwoven with soft melancholic drones and a variety of sonic ephemera in the form of incidental sounds and field recordings.' Stationary Travels (2016)
'Indeed, it was a worthwhile effort as the remastered version adds even more crepuscular beauty and depth of field. It is not so much that one version is better than another as it is akin to the effect of looking at a painting in two different kinds of light each of which brings out different elements to savor.' Stationary Travels (2017)
'Frammenti intimi, melodici, timidi o suggestioni sonore di attimi irripetibili. Uno score agrodolce per orizzonti oceanici. Senza fine.' Souterraine
'Jason van Wyk’s ‘Attachment’ is a post-classical masterpiece' Piano and Coffee
'Van Wyk is much more than a pianist; he’s attracted to deceptively simple sounds embedded in elaborate pieces.' A Closer Listen
'A gentle caressing sound graces Jason van Wyk’s lush world of “Attachment”. Quite beautiful, the songs are full of vibrant color. ' Beach Sloth
'Those who appreciate the tender piano compositions and discrete application of electronics that characterize much of Nils Frahm‘s work will especially appreciate this recording. Attachment is replete with simple, unabashed beauty albeit with sophisticated underpinnings – bittersweet tunes rendered on dampened piano interwoven with soft melancholic drones and a variety of sonic ephemera in the form of incidental sounds and field recordings.' Headphone Commute
'Of course I recommend this album to everyone who loves ambient music and modern classical stuff, perhaps even to some new age adepts out there. This is a warm, gentle and seductive album that will often appear in my playlists. I can only advice you to check it out and let this gentle storm overtake you. It's a soothing journey, I can promise you.' Merchants of Air
'The simple warmth of many of the songs on the album, and the ease of the piano melodies throughout, showcase and artist doing their best to craft an experience memorable and worthy of your listening time. Jason’s latest offering is worth a listen for anyone interested in closing their eyes for 30 minutes and find a space to find one’s self.' Neon Vision Entertainment
'Jason Van Wyk, a very Goldmund-calibre composer using acoustic piano, drone strings and bittersweet candyfloss atmospheres to paint a Nest-reaching path towards and past hope and regret.' Fluid Radio
'The focus is the desolate piano which is paired perfectly with the timbre of the drones.' Drifting, Almost Falling
'もの悲しさと可憐な美しさが同居するピアノの音色と、仄かなまどろみのサウンドが溶け合う、切なく胸に染みる優美なピアノ+アンビエント・サウンドを聴かせているアルバムとなっています。' Linus Records
'Piano-focused tenderness.’ Ambient Blog
'The album’s compositions focus on minimalist (but not abstract or structural/12-tone) piano work; there are pad synths and other background noises, but van Wyk’s piano playing is central (as in highlight “Before”). In other places the ambient mood shares time with delicate piano patterns (“Stay,” “Found”). Closer “Depart” signals a direction that he would follow on Opacity, as the strings and synths that compose the bulk of the tune create a misty, ethereal landscape for the listener to explore. The piano does (gently) reassert itself before the tune ends, because this is a piano-centric album. The focus on piano allows melodies to be developed, giving many of these songs individual character.' Independent Clauses
'A real gemstone...combining ambient and post-classical music...emotional intensity and flowing piano elements, gliding over daydreaming melodious pads.' Chain D.L.K.